“The question on everybody’s mind at the moment – what is the current market doing?
The housing market is an ever fluctuating and unpredictable thing, something that has been even more apparent in 2021. With the initial stamp duty holiday doing exactly what it was supposed to do during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, we came in to 2021 with an unexpectedly buoyant market. The market held its own, with house prices maintaining through to April. Then May hit, and the price boom began.
It wasn’t anything that could have been predicted and even with the phasing out of the stamp duty relief, prices continued to rise and demand started to outstrip supply. This is exactly where we find ourselves now; properties are selling in record time and for record prices. It’s not difficult to see that there aren’t enough new properties coming on the market, as anyone who keeps an eye on Rightmove or other property portals can see that new instructions are somewhat thin on the ground at the moment.
Some might argue that with the absence of property available to buy at the moment that there isn’t any point in trying to move. However, the more people look to move, the more houses are available. There isn’t anything to lose by trying at the moment while the house prices are holding steadily and buyer demand is so strong. You can’t find somewhere? Then don’t move. I’m a firm believer of a pressure-free approach, and if you need to stay put then at least you tried. Sometimes the greatest risks can be the most rewarding – look at us here at Mockford & Hunt.
In my opinion, I think it’s a fantastic time to sell. Why not combine the historically low borrowing rates with the fierce demand of the market? I’m quite tempted myself…”
With our limited promotion providing a FREE E.P.C, Professional photography and 360 virtual tour up until 8th September, you literally have nothing to lose. To find out more, just get in touch on 01233 367606 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Market Watch Series
Find out the latest news, views and top tips from industry experts. Up-to-date news and developments from the UK property industry, as well as insights into the ever changing market trends from Estate Agency insiders.
The Rugby Players Association (RPA) have today announced a new partnership with Prospect Tree Mortgages (PTM) on a one year member offer deal.
Prospect Tree Mortgages have considerable experience in successfully obtaining mortgages for Rugby players playing both codes in the UK, factoring in the uniqueness of their income streams often from many sources and the variances of playing contracts in the professional sporting world whether is be your first or last contract. Enjoying independent status means the widest possible choice of lenders is available to you and we can also support expatriates and foreign nationals wishing to finance UK property purchases.
Above helping players secure the best possible mortage, the company is also committed to supporting the education of all RPA Members to ensure they are fully prepared prior to buying property regardless of their current position.
Prospect Tree Mortgages Director Nick Daynes said, "We are extremely proud and delighted to partner with The RPA in not only making our expertise available to all members and staff, but actively engaging with those who may see this business area as a possible post rugby career path".
Gaia Bursell, RPA Head of Commercial and Team England commented: "Taking the stress out of sourcing a mortgage and getting a great deal is what everyone looks for in a mortgage broker and the team at Prospect Tree Mortgages do just that. They also specialise in the careers of sports people, which makes them the ideal partner for RPA members looking to expand their knowledge in this area".
About the Rugby Players Association (RPA)
The Rugby Players Association is the representative body and collective voice of professional rugby players in England. We represent more than 800 male and female current rugby players, as well as more than 400 former players.
It is our mission to support, promote and protect the interests of our members, from the moment they sign their first professional contracts, throughout their playing careers, and beyond as they embark on the next phase of their lives.
Our members enjoy a wide range of benefits, including: independent representation; legal advice; personal and professional development; playing insurance; education; confidential counselling; transition support; and much more. Members can also access the support of our official charity, Restart, in the event of serious illness, injury or hardship.
The RPA has also acted as the exclusive commercial representative of the England Team since 2004 and performs the following duties on behalf of Team England: Negotiation of the Elite Players Squad Contract, England and Saxons match fees, England team win bonuses and Image Rights payments with the RFU.
For more information about the Rugby Players Association, please visit www.theRPA.co.uk
The return of the 5% loan to value mortgage product will be welcomed by the first time buyer sector who, up until now, have been limited by lenders minimum loan to value percentages ranging from 75% - 90%, depending on employment situations. As we have seen those who are self employed finding it even tougher with vastly more restrictive lender criteria.
Since the onset of coronavirus, 95% mortgages have all but disappeared from the market – leaving many potential homeowners stranded. This scheme is therefore designed to encourage more lenders to re-enter the 95% market.
What will the new scheme look like?
95% loan to value mortgage products will be introduced from next month and run until December 2022. First time buyers, home movers and previous home owners will all be eligible to apply for the new scheme.
The scheme is similar to the 5% Help to Buy Government-backed mortgage scheme, which operated between 2013 and 2017. Any lender that is taking part in the scheme will have to offer a five-year fixed mortgage as part of their range of 95% LTV products.
Who can take advantage of the new scheme?
Any buyer with a 5% deposit can apply for one of these Government-backed mortgages. They are NOT restricted to first-time buyers. Indeed anyone may apply who is buying a main home, including previous homeowners and home movers.
Simplified eligibility criteria:
Details about what kind of mortgage rates you can get with these 95% mortgages are yet to be published. Remember, the lower your LTV, the better the rate.
Are these products good?
The reason behind this scheme is to encourage lenders to re-enter the 95% loan to value market. Many lenders offered 95% products prior to the pandemic and most withdrew for high loan to value exposure completely relatively fast.
The interest rates are not likely to be the most competitive we have seen before but will allow buyers with limited deposit funds to buy a property. Whether a 95% loan to value mortgage product is right for you though will depend on your individual circumstances and is best discussed with a mortgage advisor. Remember, if you can put down a 10% deposit then you will get access to a cheaper mortgage.
Which lenders will be offering these products?
Currently the lenders signed up to offer the new scheme are limited but are all big names within the industry who borrowers will already know. Lloyds, Natwest, Santander, Barclays and HSBC will offer these mortgages from April. Other lenders are expected to follow.
As always it is best to speak to a qualified Independent Mortgage Broker to discuss your options fully
Being ‘Independent’ means our advisers can offer advice from across the mortgage market. There is no need to waste time carrying out unnecessary research when we have it all at our fingertips. It is important that clients understand what independence in the mortgage market means and that they have the information required to choose an expert who can truly offer an independent advice service.
After completing a fact find with our clients, our experts look at all products, solutions and lenders from across the market and make recommendations based on a client’s individual needs and circumstances. As well as being able to recommend from the usual range of mortgage products and solutions we are also able to offer our clients advice and access to specialist products that include second charge mortgage loans.
Only mortgage brokers who are able to advise on the entire range of products available in the mortgage market are able to call themselves an ‘Independent’ broker. But be careful, some firms and advisers are tied to a particular panel of lenders and cannot offer you ‘whole of market’ advice. When you work with Prospect Tree Mortgages you employ the services of a properly qualified and established firm of mortgage advisers that offers ‘whole of market’ advice.
Prospect Tree Mortgages has independent status which means we can offer the best advice and recommend products based on a client’s specific individual needs, from across the entire mortgage market. With access to all the products and specialist solutions such as bridging loans and second charge mortgages. When a client contacts Prospect Tree we understand that they place their trust in us and expect to receive impartial, expert advice, based on all lenders and products in the mortgage market.
There are a few issues that make some lenders nervous when lending money to sports professionals, including the fact that they are deemed riskier due to shorter career lengths and the risk of injuries. All good lenders are keen to ensure that the mortgage loan is affordable for the sportsperson and, crucially, remains so.
Responsible lending means an Affordable Mortgage.
Mortgage lenders and brokers make sure that the loan they are providing is affordable for the client. The nature of professional sports contracts means that there is often a range of income sources that need to be considered and proven over time. Being able to afford your repayments now, and crucially in the future, is central to securing mortgage finance for sportspeople.
Shorter career lengths and earlier retirement.
There are many advantages to being a professional sportsman or woman. Depending on your age and experience you are probably well paid, you may also retire significantly earlier than other professions but, it is that early retirement that can make lenders uneasy.
Mortgages are typically taken over 20+ year terms, and if you are not going to be “working” (playing) past the age of 35, how are you going to afford the mortgage then? Proving to a lender that you have a plan for when you stop playing can be an important step to take during your career. It might be worth starting those coaching badges or helping your club with some scouting work.
Inconsistent income due to bonuses and contract lengths.
With professional sports contracts ranging typically from 1 to 5 years, lenders can feel concerned about providing a mortgage over 20+ years. Furthermore, a good proportion of your income may be made up through performance-related bonuses and there could be clauses involved to reduce the income if relegation occurs for example. There is also the realistic possibility of injury to consider. The reality is that it could end at any point. Lenders need to be happy that you will be able to pay your mortgage should that happen
Prospect Tree Mortgages secure mortgages for Rugby players playing both Rugby Union and Rugby League in the UK. We also work with expatriates and foreign nationals living outside the UK that wish to finance property in the UK.
We work with Rugby players with various length contracts, including players with their first professional Rugby contract.
Prospect Tree Mortgages are Independent and as such have the widest possible network of lenders able to consider lending to professional Rugby players.
As a Professional Rugby player, you may also have media and advertising opportunities, Prospect tree Mortgages are able to utilise this income to assist with your total borrowing power.
A Rugby players income
Similar to a professional footballer, a professional Rugby player will have a contract with a Club that employs them. The contract length can vary but will have a commencement and termination date. The Rugby Football Union (RFU) approved contract will stipulate the basic income. The contract will also state the basic salary and any individual and team bonuses a player may receive.
How do lenders treat Rugby contract income?
Not all lenders are happy to lend where the contract is not permanent. This excludes many sports professionals on fixed term contracts, such as professional Rugby players.
As an independent Mortgage Broker with access to the entire mortgage market we work with lenders that will use 100% of the basic salary plus any bonuses received.
In addition, many of the players we work with have income from advertising and sponsorship.
It is often the case that a player may have set up a Ltd company for additional income sources such as these and others. We will be able to find the right lender that will use this income in addition to your main contracted income.
Prospect Tree Mortgages specialise in securing mortgages for rugby professionals. As a professional, Independent Mortgage Brokers, we have access to lenders that can be flexible with their lending criteria.
When securing a mortgage for rugby professionals we will use our knowledge and contacts to ensure we secure the best possible terms for your situation. We work on your behalf so that you do not have to take time out of your busy day to negotiate with mortgage lenders.
We secure both Residential and Buy-to-Let mortgages on UK property.
In June 2017, The Grenfell fire tragedy shook the country, 72 people died, and hundreds affected. Suddenly, fire safety issues impacting thousands of blocks of flats were exposed. Building controls have been slack for decades and light was shed upon the construction sector who have a history of building cheaply and quickly for maximum profit margins.
The building was covered in flammable cladding causing the fire to spread quickly and easily. Since Grenfell Mortgage Lenders have proceeded with caution when considering lending on flats in tower blocks, especially when the block has cladding. Their concerns directly led to the introduction of the EWS1 (External Wall Survey) in December 2019. The EWS1 was initially recommended for residential blocks of seven stories and above and was meant to assess whether a block has been built using combustible materials for insulation or cladding. Once the survey has been completed an EWS1 form may be issued assuming the building is safe.
EWS1 – Problems
In short, the EWS1 sounds like a great idea. It does however come with it’s own set of issues and stumbling blocks. Mortgage lenders are generally refusing to lend without seeing the EWS1 Form. Leaseholders who want to move or re-mortgage are finding it incredibly difficult to get the freeholders to pay for the inspection to happen. The inspections themselves can be very costly and often are unaffordable for the freeholder to carry out. Even when a freeholder has been in a position to carry out the inspection, they often take a long time to arrange and leave leaseholders in an effective state of limbo.
There is also a significant lack of surveyors qualified to carry out an EWS1 inspection, with only a reported 291 fire engineers qualified to inspect a building. Peabody Housing Association has even told leaseholders it could be 10 years before all it’s blocks have been surveyed.
Since January 2020 safety advice was tightened by the Government causing lenders to ask for evidence of safety for almost every modern flat applied for. Even if there is a hint of cladding such as weatherboarding in a small area evidence is asked for.
Most leaseholders are still not aware of what work if any the building their flats are in need work, or how much this would cost them. The EWS1 situation is really one with no reasonable solution or end in sight. Without the EWS1 Form a property has essentially become un-mortgageable and un-saleable.
The human cost of these cladding issues are not to be forgotten either. Those leaseholders who are trying to sell their properties but are not able to due to the cladding and EWS1 are reporting more mental health issues as you would expect. Plans such as marriage, children and many other situations are basically on hold until further notice.
We work with sportsmen and women throughout the entirety of their careers. Whatever sport you play professionally, whether you are a footballer, athlete, Rugby player or professional coach, getting a mortgage can be a little more complicated than you might expect.
Our mortgage team can help you find the best mortgages for sport professionals and get you the property loan you require. Specialising in sports professionals’ mortgages means knowing how sports players income is made up, from short term contracts to appearance bonuses and win bonuses as well as subsidiary income from advertising and TV work.
We work with players receiving theorist professional contract through to clients nearing sports retirement age that may be moving into other sports related occupations such as paid TV or coaching work.
Mortgages for sports professionals include homes for you and your family to live in, second homes you will stay in occasionally or property investment mortgages (Buy to Let) for property you will rent out. As your career develops there may be additional sources of income that can be used when applying for a loan as well as future plans that you may wish to consider.
Professional athletes, despite their potential high net worth, are often viewed as a lending risk. This is often because of the short-term fixed contracts most clubs will offer. Depending on the nature of their sport, some professionals can be highly susceptible to injury that may cut their sporting career short or impact the amount or nature of remuneration they receive.
Sporting careers tend to have a shorter shelf life than others. Many sport professionals retire in their 30’s or 40’s, or even earlier in some cases. Some mortgage lenders may be willing to lend to sport professionals based on their age at the time of applying for the mortgage and their predicted retirement age.
Many sportspeople also receive additional sporadic income from factors such as bonuses, sponsorship and appearance fees. This can also prove difficult for a standard mortgage lender to assess.
When you are looking for a mortgage as a sports professional, lenders are likely to consider the following points:
How long you have been playing professionally?
Many lenders will want to see that you have been a sport professional in your chosen field for at least two years. This allows them to assess income over time. However, some lenders many offer you a mortgage deal based on anticipated income if you have just been signed by a new club or sponsor.
Many sportspeople travel regularly as part of their role, moving around nationally or internationally. Therefore, the portability of a potential mortgage deal is something that could be important, flexibility is key if you may need to relocate.
If you are an overseas citizen and have moved to the UK to play professional sport, you could initially face difficulty getting as UK mortgage deal as you may not have any UK credit history.
If you or a family member is a professional sports person, it really is imperative you take advice from an experienced Mortgage Broker. We have built up a wealth of experience across the UK within a wide variety of Sports and stages of career. Whatever Sport you are involved with please do not hesitate to get in touch to see how we can help you.
Tomorrow, we will have been operating for three weeks. In this time I can say that I have experienced mixed emotions. There’s been doubt and frustration as well as joy and satisfaction but overall I can genuinely say that the process so far has been extremely rewarding in more ways than one.
Leaving the security of a large company with a set salary and well paid commission as well as all the additional perks like the company car and private health care was scary enough but leaving it behind to set up a new business with all the financial commitment and personal risk involved could of been nothing short of terrifying.
On the day I left I received comments like “You’re brave” and “Is now really the right time to be doing this?”. For a second I maybe questioned what I was actually doing but it was literally a second.
I knew that the effort that both myself and Frances had put in to creating our brand, the website, the software the marketing campaign would pay off and sure enough on the first day before we had even put up our first “Now Open” board the phone rang with a homeowner asking us to visit their property that had been on the market with another agent for 3 months with no offers. That property is now under offer through Mockford & Hunt to a buyer who is also under offer through Mockford & Hunt!
Sellers and buyers just want helpful, proactive service and if you take the time to listen to people it makes the job far easier. It’s not about estate agency, its simply about the best parts human nature, listening, understanding and actually caring about their move.
Market Watch Series
Find out the latest news, views and top tips from industry experts. Up-to-date news and developments from the UK property industry, as well as insights into the ever changing market trends from Estate Agency insiders.
Mortgage interest rates are on the rise. It is imperative to act now to make sure you are not paying more interest than necessary. Understanding the impact increased rates will have on monthly mortgage payments and your budget is very important and should not be ignored.
The last four months have seen mortgage rates increase month on month. The average Two Year fixed rate for borrowers at 85% now sits at over 3% (3.12% according to the latest data from Moneyfacts UK).
This is an increase of 1.01% since July 2020 (when the average was 2.11%) The 5 Year Fixed rate deals have also been impacted with rate rises and are sitting at an average of 3.25% up from 2.34% in July 2020.
The situation for buyers with a 10% deposit has also seen increases to the interest rates as well as a significantly reduced pool of lenders offering 90% products. If you have a 10% deposit you are now looking at an average interest rate of 3.76% for a 2 Year Fixed Rate and 3.98% average for a 5 Year Fixed Rate.
There is no sign that the rates have reached their peak. As we have not seen the conclusion of the external factors assisting the property market. Once we move into 2021 we will know more about how the housing market will react and therefore will either see lenders be open to lending at higher loan to values or not as well as where the interest rate levels will be.
There are many factors contributing to these rate rises but in essence Mortgage Lenders are concerned about the level of risk they are undertaking at higher LTV (Loan to Value) mortgages. Ultimately the lenders are protecting themselves and their customers from fluctuations in the market and mitigating risk against a situation when a customer could find themselves in negative equity. No lender wants to repossess properties from their clients who have found themselves in circumstances meaning they are unable to pay their mortgage.
Concerns over unemployment is one of the main points lenders are worried about. Most lenders will not include furlough income in affordability calculations already. There will undoubtedly be an increase in job loses when the furlough scheme comes to an end and the lenders need to lend responsibly and make sure they are not putting their customers in bad financial situations.
The current Stamp Duty holiday (due to end in March 2021) could also have an impact on property prices and be propping up the high prices we are still seeing across the UK. Lenders will be worried that when this comes to an end housing prices may be affected negatively and therefore houses selling for less.
If you are planning on getting onto the property ladder then now is a great time, before we see rates go up any higher. Take advice, discuss what your options are and take advice to find out what is best for you.